RWAS sets up Young Members Forum

11 December 2012

The Royal Welsh Agricultural Society has established a Young Members Forum as a means of promoting the society’s aims and objectives to the younger generation.

Brief details about the forum were revealed by the chairman of the Royal Welsh board of directors, John Davies, at a meeting of the society’s Council at Builth Wells.

Members of the new organisation must be under 40 years of age and former winners of RWAS scholarships, bursaries and student awards, have been invited to join together with past Royal Welsh Lady Ambassadors and two representatives from each of the society’s county advisory committees from across Wales.

The young members have been invited to apply for the Agri-Academy Rural Leadership Programme, a joint initiative between the Welsh Government’s Farming Connect programme and the society.

“The aim of the programme is to inspire and develop a new generation of leaders in rural Wales,” said Mr Davies.

Mr Davies, who was appointed as the new chairman of the Royal Welsh board in October, was making his first report to the society’s Council. He paid tribute to the retiring president of the society, John R Davies, for his inspirational leadership during Breconshire’s year as the feature county when £246,000 was raised for the feature county fund. Some £47,000 of the money was spent on upgrading the former Welsh Government Pavilion which is now called the Green Pavilion and which staged a renewable energy exhibit at the show. Brecknock was devoting the rest of the fund to additional accommodation for sheep with the balance as the first contribution towards much-needed and promised improvements to the equine facilities at Llanelwedd.

Mr Davies said he wanted to express the board’s gratitude to the sponsors of the three Royal Welsh events – the Spring Festival, the summer show and the Winter Fair – for their generous support in what are challenging times.

Income from letting the showground and its facilities for various events during the year amounted to some £350,000 which was £20,000 more than budget. However, with the improved facilities on the showground there needed to be a focus on marketing to encourage greater use, he said.